Washington, D.C., August 12 —Patton Boggs LLP has been named one of the 2008 Best Law Firms for Women by Working Mother magazine and the national legal consulting firm Flex-Time Lawyers LLC. The firm was specifically singled out for its vision, accomplishment, and unparalleled success supporting working mothers with a healthy work/life balance, retaining female attorneys and promoting outstanding women.
Patton Boggs will be featured in the August/September issue of the magazine along with other top firms in a special section highlighting their efforts to retain female lawyers. Representatives of the firm will also attend a gala awards luncheon at the Mandarin Oriental in New York, NY on September 15, 2008.
Working Mother magazine, the authoritative source for career moms, and Flex-Time Lawyers LLC, a national consulting firm advising attorneys and legal employees on women’s workplace matters, created the award last year to recognize firms that met today’s rising female workforce demands. The honor builds on the tradition set by Working Mother 100 Best Companies, which has set the benchmark for work/life best practices nationwide for more than two decades.
The legal profession’s “billable hour” system impedes women who want to both advance their careers and raise a family, said Carol Evans, chief executive officer of Working Mother Media.
“The 100-hour work week model is just not effective,” Evans said.
With women composing nearly half of all law school graduates, law firms will have to make “a fundamental shift in their policies regarding partnership in order to remain competitive,” Evans said. “We hope that by recognizing the pioneering firms that have already moved the needle, a paradigm shift will follow,” Evans said.
This year, the number of applicants for the award increased by 30 percent, a sign that law firms see the importance of attracting and retaining female lawyers.
The firms selected for the award are “making progress and understanding the need to move in a new direction,” said Deborah Epstein Henry, founder and president of Flex-Time Lawyers. For example, the average number of female equity partners rose to 19 percent this year, up from 16 percent last year.
Patton Boggs is delighted to win such a prestigious honor, said Stuart Pape, managing partner at Patton Boggs. Providing female lawyers a way to balance work and family life is an important strategic goal for Patton Boggs, Pape said.
"The important career/life balance issues that Working Mother regularly covers are very much in-line with our goals at Patton Boggs,” Pape said. “We try to provide a supportive work environment for all of our employees and their families. We are particularly proud of our human resources department, as well as our partnership, who have so effectively taken the lead on ensuring that we support our working mothers.”